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The Current, Episode 30: David Rothkopf, Keith Boykin, Elizabeth Becker

About the Book

National Insecurity

David Rothkopf

In the wake of 9/11, America and its people have experienced a sense of vulnerability unprecedented in the nation's recent history. Buffeted by challenges from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to the financial crisis, from Washington dysfunction to the rise of China and the dawn of the era of cyber warfare, two very different presidents and their advisors have struggled to cope with a relentless array of new threats.

You may think you know the story. But in National Insecurity, David Rothkopf offers an entirely new perspective into the hidden struggles, the surprising triumphs, and the shocking failures of those charged with leading the United States through one of the most difficult periods in its history. Thanks to his extraordinary access, Rothkopf provides fresh insights drawing on more than one hundred exclusive interviews with the key players who shaped this era.

At its core, National Insecurity is the gripping story of a superpower in crisis, seeking to adapt to a rapidly changing world, sometimes showing inspiring resilience -- but often undone by the human flaws of those at the top, the mismanagement of its own system, the temptation to concentrate too much power within the hands of too few in the White House itself, and an unwillingness to draw the right lessons from the recent past. Nonetheless, within that story are unmistakable clues to a way forward that can help restore American leadership.

About the Book

Race Against Time

Keith Boykin

From a national political commentator and New York Times bestselling author, an analysis of America's burning race crisis and the incomplete efforts in the past two decades -- by social movements and political leaders -- to address it, offering a vision for a way forward that makes true equality the goal.

As the upheaval of 2020 has made clear, America has utterly failed to atone for its original sin of racism. As America turns blacker and browner, the combination of fearful whites, angry and newly empowered blacks, and an inexcusable absence of leadership from Washington has created ideal conditions for conflict. There is a way out of our burning race crisis - but in order to prepare for the future, we first need to learn the lessons of the new age of reckoning.

The current racial reckoning is the culmination of two decades of political miscalculations and ongoing organizing. In Race Against Time, national political commentator Keith Boykin offers a nuanced, in-depth account of political maneuverings from Washington to the streets, showing how Republicans, Democrats, and even populist movements have failed to address the dire realities that threaten the nation.

Boykin details the effects of the emergence and persistence of the Black Lives Matter movement; Democrats' failed strategies of incrementalism during the Obama era and the legacies of Clinton-era policies; the minority, obstructionist policies of the Republicans; and the Bernie Sanders coalition's well-meaning but race-neutral economic reforms. With few exceptions, Boykin contends, we have refused to learn from the mistakes of these efforts, leaving us utterly unprepared for the future.

Drawing on on-the-ground reporting and political analysis based on his years as a Washington insider, Boykin argues that the path forward is a race-based restructuring of the country where equality - not marginal improvement - is the goal. This is what the Black Lives Matter era has demanded of us, and it is the only just future for America.

About the Book

You Don't Belong Here

Elizabeth Becker

The long buried story of three extraordinary female journalists who permanently shattered the official and cultural barriers to women covering war.

Kate Webb, an Australian iconoclast, Catherine Leroy, a French dare devil photographer, and Frances FitzGerald, a blue-blood American intellectual, arrived in Vietnam with starkly different life experiences but one shared purpose: to report on the most consequential story of the decade.

At a time when women were considered unfit to be foreign reporters, Frankie, Catherine and Kate paid their own way to war, arrived without jobs, challenged the rules imposed on them by the military, ignored the belittlement and resentment of their male peers and found new ways to explain the war through the people who lived through it.

In You Don't Belong Here, Elizabeth Becker uses these women's work and lives to illuminate the Vietnam War from the 1965 American buildup, through the Tet Offensive, the expansion into Cambodia, the American defeat and its aftermath. Arriving herself in the last years of the war, Elizabeth writes as an historian and a witness to what these women accomplished.

What emerges is an unforgettable story of three journalists forging their place in a land of men, often at great personal sacrifice, and forever altering the craft of war reportage for generations. Deeply reported and filled with personal letters, interviews, and profound insight, You Don't Belong Here fills a void in the history of women and of war.

The Current, Episode 29: Jeremy Arnold

About the Book

Christmas in the Movies

Jeremy Arnold

Turner Classic Movies presents a bucket list of the best and most beloved holiday films of all time, complete with spirited commentary, behind-the-scenes stories, and photos spanning eight decades of Christmastime favorites.

Nothing brings the spirit of the season into our hearts quite like a great holiday movie. "Christmas films" come in many shapes and sizes and exist across many genres. Some, like It's a Wonderful Life and A Christmas Story, are perennials, while others, such as Die Hard, have only gradually become yuletide favorites. But they all have one thing in common: they use themes evoked by the holiday period - nostalgia, joy, togetherness, dysfunction, commercialism, or cynicism - as a force in their storytelling.

Turner Classic Movies: Christmas in the Movies showcases the very best among this uniquely spirited strain of cinema. Each film is profiled on what makes it a "Christmas movie," along with behind-the-scenes stories of its production, reception, and legacy. Complemented by a trove of color and black-and-white photos, Turner Classic Movies: Christmas in the Movies is a glorious salute to a collection of the most treasured films of all time.
Among the 30 films included: The Shop Around the Corner, Holiday Inn, Meet Me in St. Louis, It's a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street, White Christmas, A Christmas Story, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, Little Women,and The Nightmare Before Christmas.

The Current, Episode 28: Sarah Knight

About the Book

The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck Journal

Sarah Knight

Are you stressed out, overbooked, and underwhelmed by life? Fed up with pleasing everyone else before you please yourself? It's time to stop giving a f*ck with this write-in journal.​
 
This brilliant, hilarious, and practical journal explains how to rid yourself of unwanted obligations, shame, and guilt, and give your f*cks instead to people and things that make you happy. The easy-to-use, two-step NotSorry method for mental decluttering will help you unleash the power of not giving a f*ck about family drama, having a "bikini body," coworkers' annoying opinions, pets, and children, and tons of other bullsh*t.
 
This write-in journal has plenty of space to record the things you want to give a f*ck about, guided exercises for freeing yourself of unwanted obligations, and lots of charts, graphs, and straight-talking advice to help you save your time, money, and energy for the things that really matter. The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck Journal is your invitation to stop giving a f*ck and start living your best life today!

The Current, Episode 27: Becky Cooper

About the Book

We Keep the Dead Close

Becky Cooper

NATIONAL BESTSELLER

Named One of The Best Books of 2020 by NPR's Fresh Air * Publishers Weekly * MarieClaire.com * Redbook

A Recommended Book by The New York Times * The Washington Post * Publisher's Weekly * Kirkus Reviews* Booklist * The Boston Globe * Goodreads * Buzzfeed * Town & Country * Refinery29 * BookRiot * CrimeReads * Glamour * Popsugar * PureWow * Shondaland

Dive into a "tour de force of investigative reporting" (Ron Chernow): a "searching, atmospheric and ultimately entrancing" (Patrick Radden Keefe) true crime narrative of an unsolved 1969 murder at Harvard and an "exhilarating and seductive" (Ariel Levy) narrative of obsession and love for a girl who dreamt of rising among men.

You have to remember, he reminded me, that Harvard is older than the U.S. government. You have to remember because Harvard doesn't let you forget.

1969: the height of counterculture and the year universities would seek to curb the unruly spectacle of student protest; the winter that Harvard University would begin the tumultuous process of merging with Radcliffe, its all-female sister school; and the year that Jane Britton, an ambitious twenty-three-year-old graduate student in Harvard's Anthropology Department and daughter of Radcliffe Vice President J. Boyd Britton, would be found bludgeoned to death in her Cambridge, Massachusetts apartment.
 
Forty years later, Becky Cooper a curious undergrad, will hear the first whispers of the story. In the first telling the body was nameless. The story was this: a Harvard student had had an affair with her professor, and the professor had murdered her in the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology because she'd threatened to talk about the affair. Though the rumor proves false, the story that unfolds, one that Cooper will follow for ten years, is even more complex: a tale of gender inequality in academia, a 'cowboy culture' among empowered male elites, the silencing effect of institutions, and our compulsion to rewrite the stories of female victims.
 
We Keep the Dead Close is a memoir of mirrors, misogyny, and murder. It is at once a rumination on the violence and oppression that rules our revered institutions, a ghost story reflecting one young woman's past onto another's present, and a love story for a girl who was lost to history.

The Current, Episode 26: Christen Brandt and Tammy Tibbetts

About the Book

Impact

Christen Brandt

If you've ever felt too overwhelmed to make a difference, or just unsure of how to apply your unique skills to a bigger purpose, this book is ready to unlock your potential.

When you feel that pull to be part of social change, where do you start? How can you ensure that your good intentions create a positive impact? How do you focus your scattered efforts? And how do you sustain yourself throughout?

Impact brings you the answers. Drawing on their network and experience as founders of She's the First, Christen Brandt and Tammy Tibbetts show you how to create your own impact strategy, one that fits into your life and allows you to match what you have with what the world needs.

Their guidance, paired with interactive activities, will lead you to identify your North Star, find the right partners, and plug into movements for long-term, systemic change. Equally important, you'll learn how to address biases, practice allyship, and shift power to become more inclusive and effective in your journey.

About the Book

Impact

Christen Brandt

If you've ever felt too overwhelmed to make a difference, or just unsure of how to apply your unique skills to a bigger purpose, this book is ready to unlock your potential.

When you feel that pull to be part of social change, where do you start? How can you ensure that your good intentions create a positive impact? How do you focus your scattered efforts? And how do you sustain yourself throughout?

Impact brings you the answers. Drawing on their network and experience as founders of She's the First, Christen Brandt and Tammy Tibbetts show you how to create your own impact strategy, one that fits into your life and allows you to match what you have with what the world needs.

Their guidance, paired with interactive activities, will lead you to identify your North Star, find the right partners, and plug into movements for long-term, systemic change. Equally important, you'll learn how to address biases, practice allyship, and shift power to become more inclusive and effective in your journey.